How to Carry Kayaks on a Travel Trailer or Motorhome?

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Kayaking is fun and one of the most exciting summer activities. However, carrying a kayak on a motorhome or travel trailer is somewhat confusing. This piece of the post will simplify things by taking a look at a few options available out there.

If you’re planning your next RV trip somewhere near the lake or river access, water-related activities may be an important factor in making your trip even more fun. People who love kayaking prefer having their kayak rather than renting out one. This is because renting a kayak is considered expensive when compared to a privately owned kayak.

However, carrying your kayak safely on a travel trailer or motorhome is something you have to consider. Of course, it is possible to carry your kayak on a travel trailer, and there are many ways to do that. Below, I will highlight some of the easiest ways to carry your kayak to the camping location with you.

How to Carry Kayaks on a Travel Trailer or Motorhome?

So, let’s get started!

How to Carry Kayaks on a Travel Trailer or Motorhome?

Since there are different types of kayaks, there are different options to transport kayaks. Here are some of the easiest ones that will help you to transport your kayak.

1. Internal Storage

Internal Storage

There are some travel trailers with a full basement that has compartments reaching side to side. Most fifth wheel trailers come equipped with such basement compartments. However, it depends on your travel trailer design.

If you have such internal storage space, they usually have ample room to slide standard size kayaks into the compartments. This is the simplest and safest way to carry kayaks on a travel trailer or motorhome. It also has a locking convenience, and no one even knows that you are carrying a kayak with you. It won’t slide out, so there is no chance of damage as well.

2. Roof Mounts

Roof Mounts

Roof mounts are another secure option to carry your kayaks on a travel trailer. They can be on the tow vehicle’s roof or on the RV roof. They are great and safe when you are considering transporting your kayak after loading it properly. Usually, roof mounts come with ample room, meaning you can load more than one kayaks at once, which is great for family travelers.

However, regardless of how safe it is to mount your kayak on roof mounts, there is also a disadvantage to it. It can create problems when passing under overpasses. So, it is a must to not surpass clearance limits. Besides kayaks, you should take this into consideration while transporting anything else on the roof of your recreational or tow vehicle.

Lifetime Warranty TMS® 2 Pairs J-Bar Rack HD Kayak Carrier Canoe Boat Surf Ski Roof Top Mount Car SUV Crossbar
  • KAYAK CAR TOP CARRIER A simple, low-cost solution to carrying your kayak ITEM#: KAYAK-RK-J(2SET) CONDITION: BRAND NEW QUANTITY: 2 PAIRS
  • This Kayak Carrier designed mounts to virtually all crossbars and load bars on the market. The carrier secures the kayak on its side, consuming minimal space on the load bar. As shown in the pictures we put the Kayak Rack on the Ladder Rack Bar.(sold separatly). A maximum of 4 sets of kayak racks can be mounted on a full size truck. Save your space.
  • Features: Steel design with adjustable padding for carrying strength and kayak protection Wide mouth J bar offers easier loading and unloading Quick on/off hardware ensures fast installation and removal Optimally sized J style carrier leaves roof space All surface rust-resistant coating and hardware for longer product life Includes all mounting hardware and 2 straps Accommodates kayaks up to 36" wide and 75lbs. Compatible with most crossbars and load bars. Powder-coated finish for rust resistance
  • LIFETIME WARRANTY- Your satisfaction is the most important to us and we offer limited lifetime warranty for our kayak rack carrier. If you have any concerns with this product, please contact us.
  • PLEASE CHECK MEASUREMENTS BEFORE PURCHASE.

3. Ladder Rack

Ladder Rack

Another way to carry kayaks on a travel trailer is to invest in a ladder rack going in the tow vehicle’s bed. They are cost-efficient and straightforward to mount. Using the straps to ratchet down the kayak, make sure the safety of kayaks while transporting them. Moreover, you can also use bicycle locks to ensure it won’t slide down.

However, take note that these locks aren’t always effective in some circumstances. It is best to mount the kayaks as high as possible. It will help to prevent others from standing next to your recreation vehicle from reaching out to your kayak.

RAD Sportz Kayak Wall Hangers 100 LB Capacity Kayak Storage For Garage or Shed
  • KAYAK WALL MOUNT – The hangers provide an easy way to mount your kayak, snowboard, or surf board neatly on the wall of your garage or shed.
  • SECURE STORAGE – Constructed from sturdy powder coated steel, the hooks can be mounted right into your wall studs to safely store equipment up to 100-pounds.
  • FOAM PADDED HOOKS – The hooks are designed with a foam padding to protect your kayak or sporting equipment from scratches.
  • EASY INSTALLATION – The hooks can be easily mounted right onto the wall with minimal assembly or tools needed.
  • PRODUCT DETAILS – Materials: Powder Coated Steel and Foam; Dimensions of each hook: 15.25" x 3" x 25”; 100-pound weight capacity.

4. Ceiling Hoist

Ceiling Hoist

Making the use of a ceiling hoist is yet another way to carry kayaks on a travel trailer, transporting it to the location you are going to camp. A ceiling hoist inside your recreational vehicle can also be used to carry kayaks if it has enough space to accommodate it. Upon hitting your camping location, you can quickly stow your kayak underneath your recreational vehicle.

This is especially useful for RVers who don’t want to add mounts to their camper’s exterior or don’t have a towing vehicle to tow along with them. However, you should also keep in mind that it is not an ideal solution as it needs solid mounting to make it work effectively.

Kayak Hoist Set – Overhead Pulley System with 125 lb Capacity for Kayaks, Canoes, Bikes, or Ladder Storage by Rad Sportz (2 Pack)
  • SET OF 2 CEILING HOISTS – The set of 2 storage hoists are ideal for keeping your kayaks, canoes, bikes, or ladders suspended overhead for convenient out of the way storage in your garage or shed
  • PULLEY SYSTEM – The hoists utilize a pulley system with a safety locking mechanism that makes it easy to lift and safely store equipment up to 125-pounds
  • RUBBER COATED HOOKS – The hooks are designed with a rubber coating to protect your kayak or canoe from scratches
  • EASY INSTALLATION – The pulleys can be used on ceilings up to 12 feet. Please note, you can mount this item as pictured on a 2 X 4 and screw the 2 X 4 to the joist or mount it right to the joist itself
  • PRODUCT DETAILS – 125 weight capacity per hoist. Set of 2

5. Kayak Trailers

Kayak Trailer

If you are a diehard fan of kayaking and willing to carry more than one kayaks, kayaks trailers are what you need to look up as the perfect solution. Suppose the budget isn’t an issue (as they are expensive); it is incredibly convenient to carry kayaks with a travel trailer rather than loading/unloading them on the top of your recreational vehicle’s roof. However, I strongly recommend you to not use this method if you are just a beginner.

RIGHT-ON TRAILER Multi Sport Multi Sport Trailer
  • Configure to carry up to 6 bicycles (or a cargo box and 3 bicycles)
  • Crossbars (64" wide) supports all roof rack accessories from companies like Yakama and Thule
  • Easy Loading and light weight: Perfect for small car pulling
  • More fuel efficient than carrying gear on a roof rack

Best Kayak Racks for Travel Trailers or Motorhomes

Here are my top kayak racks that you can have for your camper,

1. Vertiyak Kayak Rack

VERTIYAK

Vertiyak kayak rack is a great solution to carry kayaks with a camper. They are attached to the rear of your camper, capable of transporting up to two kayaks safely in a vertical position. While using them, make sure to fit one end of your kayak into their 11” x 17” hoop. At the same time, the metal arms at the top of the rack tend to keep your kayak stable.

Although Vertiyak is an affordable solution to carry kayaks with a travel trailer, you should keep in mind that the metal arms may damage your kayak’s exterior. So, it would be great to install foam padding around the hoop to eliminate the risk of wear and scratches.

Pros
  • It is affordable.
  • It comes with a simple and design and structure.
  • It can hold up to two kayaks safely.
  • You can add more support to cables or straps.
Cons
  • Metal arms don’t have foam padding.

2. Yakups KR 2B56

If you’re looking for a solution to carry kayaks with a travel trailer along with tons of gear, Yakups KR 2B56 could be the best option. It has the capacity to carry tons of gear and weight. It is also a great option to fit your 32” wide and 6 ½” long kayaks for transportation. Unlike Vertiyak, it can carry up to four kayaks of standard size, which means you can have plenty of fun on the water with your buddies or family.

Moreover, in addition to carrying kayaks, they can also hold two bikes simultaneously. Each of the racks is custom made, fitting your bicycles and kayaks like a glove. The package includes all the necessary additional tools and equipment to make the installation process a breeze.

Pros
  • It is extremely durable.
  • The installation process is nothing but a breeze.
  • It has remarkable storage capacity and can accommodate up to four standard size kayaks along with two bicycles at the same time.
  • Although it is installed to the rear of the camper, it doesn’t interrupt the rearview camera.
Cons
  • It will add additional weight to your recreational vehicle (90 lbs).
  • The package doesn’t include a bike rack, so you have to buy it separately.

3. Yakups KR2B56S

Yakups KR2B56S

If you want to enjoy more fun on the water with your family and looking for a kayak rack that can hold up to four kayaks at the same time, look no further than Yakups KR2B56S. Having installed this rack to your RV means you can carry multiple kayaks along with you to your camping spot. Moreover, you can use it to carry surfboards as well.

The rack is custom made, meaning it will perfectly fit your kayaks and vehicle measurements. Furthermore, it can also accommodate vessels with a width of up to 32” while also accommodating up to four standard size kayaks. The package arrives with all the necessary tools, so you don’t have to buy anything extra.

Pros
  • You can use the rack to carry four standard size kayaks.
  • You can also carry surfboards using the rack.
  • It is armed with steel guards to keep your equipment safe.
Cons
  • It isn’t an optimal option for you if you want to carry only one kayak.
  • It is a bit heavy.

Wrapping Up

Carry a kayak with a travel trailer is possible, but you have to make sure of its safety. In this regard, you can use different options. Above, I have discussed different options to carry kayaks on a motorhome. Moreover, I have also listed the best racks for kayaks along with their pros/cons that you can install to your recreational vehicle. For further assistance, you’re welcome to write a comment below.

FAQs

How many kayaks can I transport using a kayak rack?

It depends as there are different types of kayaks and kayak racks. However, most kayak racks can accommodate up to four standard size kayaks.

Is it safe to use roof mounts to transport kayaks?

Using roof mounts of your recreational or tow vehicle is a good option to carry kayaks. However, you should not surpass the clearance limits.

About Ted Mosby

My Name is Ted Mosby from Cleveland, Ohio. I am a freelance Architect. I live in New Jersey, USA right now and I take my RV every alternate weekend. As I am a Freelancer I can work anywhere so most of my work is done inside my camper remotely.